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12 of the best jokes and one-liners ever told at the Edinburgh Fringe

TV channel Dave has been valiantly trying to determine the best joke at the Fringe for over a decade. Here are the previous winners – and the new 2022 number one

Andrzej Lukowski
Written by
Andrzej Lukowski

What is the ‘best joke of the Edinburgh Fringe’? How does one determine such a thing? It’s a herculean and even quite existentially challenging task, that mercifully we at Time Out have never actually attempted to determine.

But beloved TV channel Dave has been running an annual contest – Dave’s Joke of the Fringe – for some years now to allow the public to choose a winner from a shortlist provided to them by on-the-ground experts.

It turns out Dave audiences basically like zingers, one-liners and snappy puns: there isn’t much overlap between this award and the much more progressive main comedy awards. And that’s basically fine. The award made a return in 2022 after being off for two years because of the pandemic: here are all of the winners. 

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The best jokes and one-liners ever told at the Edinburgh Fringe

2022 – Masai Graham

‘I tried to steal spaghetti from the shop, but the female guard saw me and I couldn’t get pasta.’

2019 – Olaf Falafel

‘I keep randomly shouting out “Broccoli” and “Cauliflower” – I think I might have Florets.’

2018 – Adam Rowe

‘Working at the job centre has to be a tense job: knowing that if you get fired, you still have to come in the next day.’

2017 – Ken Cheng

‘I’m not a fan of the new pound coin, but then again, I hate all change.’

2016 – Masai Graham

‘My dad has suggested that I register for a donor card. He’s a man after my own heart.’

2015 – Tommy Tiernan

‘Two flies are playing football in a saucer. One says to the other: “Make an effort, we’re playing in the cup tomorrow.”’

2014 – Tim Vine

‘I’ve decided to sell my Hoover… well, it was just collecting dust.’

2013 – Rob Auton

‘I heard a rumour that Cadbury is bringing out an oriental chocolate bar. Could be a Chinese Wispa.’

2012 – Stewart Francis

‘You know who really gives kids a bad name? Posh and Becks.’

2011 – Nick Helm

‘I needed a password eight characters long so I picked Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.’

2010 – Tim Vine

‘I've just been on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday. I’ll tell you what, never again.’

2009 – Dan Antopolski

‘Hedgehogs – why can’t they just share the hedge?’ 


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